72 total views, 1 views today
One of the biggest nightmares of job seekers or employees today has become getting to know that the company in which they seek employment has its operations situated in Apapa and environs.
The mere realisation of this fact could make them turn down an employment offer due to the heavy gridlock and dilapidated road networks caused by trailers pushing their way through into Nigeria’s busiest port city.
Even when an employer of labour decides to triple employees pay to serve as an incentive, it is still not enough to get them to stay as many prefer to take up jobs that are farther – and even with a lower pay – so long it does not have its route linked with Apapa.
There have been the challenge of having to get the best hands to work with us, even when we get them, they do not last due to the precarious infrastructural state of our roads in Apapa, according to Emeka Ugoji, a manager of a financial firm who operates around Apapa with a staff strength of 150 employees
“No fewer than 50 employees that we have recruited in the last one month have either resigned to take up another job which according to our research is farther and with a little pay than what we offer or they have decided to stay at home pending when they get another”, the manager said.
“Even those who choose to retain a job here, we noticed that their input or productivity to the growth of the organisation is low. We have even adjusted our resumption time to fit two hours behind scheduled yet it wouldn’t help”, Ugoji explained
Apapa, a name synonymous in the lips of residents in Nigeria’s commercial hub, Lagos, as “high way to hell”, is home to two of the country’s busiest ports and that is the Apapa port and the Tincan Island port.
Several business owners who spoke to BusinessDay also complained on the high cost of having to train employees on a regular basis. “Since many of the employees we get to employ do not last long on the job, we would have to start opening our doors of recruitment every now and then and this cost a lot of money”,
The sorry state of Apapa is helping to breed hoodlums and criminal activities as robbers hide in dark corners shielded by trucks to snatch phones and property of people toeing through that route.
For the federal government, Apapa is seen as a “cash cow” that rakes in billions of Naira, while they overlook the rigour that commuters and residents using that route suffer as a result of the bad roads.
Aside the dilapidated infrastructure, the road networks leading in and out of Apapa has been jam-packed with trucks of high network individuals, believed to be more superior to the federal government as they take the road as their place of abode, leaving commuters who are going about their daily business to bear the brunt.
In two different occasions, these truck drivers have defied presidential orders asking them to evacuate the roads within 72 hours ultimatum.
“It is not enough giving orders for the tanker drivers to move off the roads, you would need to create an alternative where they can move to else such orders won’t have much effect.”
Last week, NASCON Allied Industries, a subsidiary of Dangote Industries Limited joined the league of many other companies that have left Apapa vicinity due to the unending gridlock.
The firm in its Annual General Meeting (AGM) announced that it is relocating 60 percent of its Apapa plant production capacity to other of its operations in Oregun and Port Harcourt plants to reduce the effects of the gridlock. According to the firm, the intense gridlock in the area is stifling its activities by hindering the free movement of raw materials and the timely delivery of finished goods to customers.
In a nutshell, a movement of 60 percent of the firm’s operations to as far as Rivers State, would exacerbate the country’s already ballooning unemployment rate currently at 23 percent as many of its staff would be worst in relocating along with the firm.